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Preoperative Instructions

A preoperative nurse will call you a couple of days prior to your child's surgery to provide preoperative instructions and obtain medical information (including your child's current list of medications/doses). If the pre-op nurse is unable to visit with you, please contact the pre-op nurses' office between 6 a.m. to 3 p.m., the weekday prior to your child's surgery at 402-955-4749.

If your child develops a cold, fever, rash, diarrhea, vomiting or other signs of infection (including exposure to chickenpox) prior to surgery, please notify your surgeon or the CARES Unit at 402-955-4777 weekdays between 5:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Your surgeon may want to reschedule the surgery to a later date.

Eating, drinking and medication guidelines

For the safety of your child, it is important that he or she has an empty stomach before surgery. Please follow these instructions:

  • Your child may have regular foods for the evening meal on the day prior to surgery. Please try to avoid spicy, greasy or fried foods as they can cause nausea and vomiting during or after surgery.
  • On the day of surgery, your child may take all scheduled medications with a sip of water and nebulizer treatments prior to surgery unless your doctor instructs you differently.
  • No aspirin may be taken one week prior to surgery. (Check with your doctor to make sure that this is safe for your child.)
  • No nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs may be taken three days prior to surgery. This includes medications such as Advil, Aleve, Ibuprofen, Motrin, Naprosyn, Nuprin, Pediaprofen or Toradol.

 
The following recommendations should be approved by your anesthesiologist first. 
 

Newborns to 1 year of age:
  • No solids after midnight (no food, gum, candy, breath mints, etc.).
  • May have formula or milk until six hours before scheduled time of surgery or procedure.
  • May have breast milk or clear liquids* until four hours before scheduled time of surgery or procedure.
One to 5 years of age:
  • No solids, milk, or orange juice after midnight (no food, gum, candy, breath mints, etc.).
  • May have clear liquids* until four hours before the surgery.
Five years and older:
  • No solids, milk, or orange juice after midnight (no food, gum, candy, breath mints, etc.).
  • May have clear liquids* until six hours before surgery.
  • Clear liquids include: Sprite, 7-Up, water, Kool-Aid, fruit popsicles, Jell-O (without fruit in it), broth, tea, apple juice, white grape juice, Pedialyte or Gatorade.
  • It is not necessary to wake your child to provide allowed pre-op liquids.
  • If your child eats or drinks after the instructed stop time, surgery may be delayed or canceled because serious complications could develop.
  • Call the CARES Unit immediately if your child accidentally eats or drinks after the instructed time at 402-955-4777.
© Children's Hospital & Medical Center | In Affiliation with University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Medicine